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To be worried I'm relapsing into an eating disorder?

(10 Posts)

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Gertrudesings Wed 25-Oct-17 17:48:27

If anyone else has had an ED and has patches of relapse or near relapse I'd really appreciate your views.

I had bulimia that escalated into anorexia when I was 22 and I had inpatient psychiatric treatment for the ED, PTSD and clinical depression. I was raped when I was 11 and kept it quiet until I was 20 and then developed lots of MH issues. I recovered, went on to have 3DC's was strong enough to leave a physically abusive marraige etc.

Fast forward to now, I'm 38 and last week went into hospital for an op for UTI's and endometriosis. I got weighed. I haven't weighed myself for years because I become fixated and I felt healthy. I run regularly. I eat well etc. I'm a size 12 which I was happy with (apart from my post x3 tummy) I tried to look away but the nurse spoke my weight in kg (72kg). I had a general anaesthetic and had a terrible reaction to it so when I came round I had a massive sense of doom and panic. The anaesthetist said it's a rare reaction called akithesia.

Anyway, for the past week I have been obsessed with my weight and have started restricting food. I feel really really really down sad

I can't separate it out if it's the reaction I had to the anaesthetic or I'm relapsing. I feel completely and utterly ridiculous that at 38 I'm once again obsessed with my body and it's affecting my MH. AIBU? I'm being pathetic aren't I?

JustKeepDancing Wed 25-Oct-17 18:07:49

No, you're absolutely not being pathetic, EDs are complex and I don't think you're being daft, pathetic, or anything other than very brave and sensible for acknowledging how you're feeling and your fears.

It's not something I have experienced so I don't have specific advice other than to suggest you call your GP tomorrow for an urgent appointment, to discuss how you feel with them. Would calling Mind's helpline for reassurance that you're not being daft help too?
Good luck flowers

Caulk Wed 25-Oct-17 18:11:30

I had a similar experience after a GA a few weeks ago. It’s also more likely that you’ll be emotional after the surgery.
I spoke to my therapist and we talked about how far I’ve come and how at any other time it wouldn’t have bothered me- just at that time I was more vulnerable. Maybe this is the same for you?

I focused on keeping well enough to recover well and after about a fortnight it was fine. I found that I had to use a lot of skills I haven’t for a while like remembering how well I was doing rather than feeling shit for not being the weight I wanted.

Mainly though, I just thought “this is a reaction to the GA, this isn’t how I would react” and blamed that.

Gertrudesings Wed 25-Oct-17 18:21:29

caulk that's really interesting re your reaction to GA.

Before my surgery I had a really stable and 'together' period. I was the closest to happy I'd been in years.

This week mentally, in all ways, I have nosedived. I think I went back to work too early (went back on Monday) so I think I've pushed myself. Restricting my food scares the shit out of me, I almost do it automatically. I make myself 'forget' to eat and now I've got the DC's I can't behave like this.

Justkeep that was a really kind comment. Thank you. I feel so silly!

musicposy Wed 25-Oct-17 18:30:32

I had a GA four years ago which relapsed me into full blown anorexia. It wasn't just the GA, I don't think, it was also that I had a lot of teeth out and it was hard to eat. People started telling me I'd lost weight and that spiralled it. By the autumn I was in a very bad way.

I'm recovered now but I always have to be wary - those thoughts, I find, are always waiting to pounce when you're vulnerable. You're not being silly at all.

Tell people. It's a good first step on here but it's important you tell friends and family in real life how you're feeling. Eating disorders thrive on lies and secrecy, so break that now. And I agree with the poster who said see your GP if you think you're on a slippery slope.

Be kind to yourself. I was in my mid 40s and still fell prey to a full blown ED, so it does not respect age. I know that feeling of being too old for an ED, but it's not as simple as that. A general anaesthetic hits you harder than you think.

Caulk Wed 25-Oct-17 18:31:09

I have six weeks off so it’s been slightly different but maybe returning to work can help you have to get back into a routine?

I’d ask for this to be moved to the ED board as you’ll get more responses there I think.

Gertrudesings Wed 25-Oct-17 18:40:31

Thanks caulk I didn't know there was an ED board.

musicposy GA's and definitely the Fentanyl and tranquilliser they used on me, affects the neurological toxicity in the brain so something has definitely impacted on me.

I am fixated on the 70kg. I can hear the nurse saying it and I was so shocked. I thought I was about 60-65kg tops but to hear that shook my world. I went for a run at the weekend and peed blood and I let looking at myself in the mirror thinking 'wtf are you doing Gertrude' sad

manicinsomniac Wed 25-Oct-17 18:43:25

You're not being pathetic AT ALL. Sometimes the smallest of things can set off a relapse and finding out your weight is no small thing to someone with an ED history.

I've had anorexia since I was 15 (over half my life - aargh!) and one thing that helps me to stay somewhat stable is under no circumstances weighing myself. I don't have scales in the house. I had a bad year last year and have ended up back in outpatient treatment and they insist on weighing at every session. It is destroying me and, imo, doing harm than good because I feel like I have to be lighter each time. I'm not actually losing weight every week (or even most weeks) but my weight certainly isn't going up and it desperately needs to. I'm convinced that if I could just work on structured meal planning, introducing new food etc WITHOUT the weighing then I could potentially make progress.

It's certainly much more common to develop an eating disorder as a girl/young woman but, once you have or have had one, they certainly don't respect age.

If you can, see if you can get a little bit of early intervention to head off a relapse - even if that's just confiding in an understanding friend.

ToniMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 25-Oct-17 18:50:02

We will be moving this thread to the Eating Disorders topic soon.

BamburyFuriou3 Sat 25-Nov-17 09:50:52

Just an this.
Not sure if it's any help but I had anorexia and bulimia in my twenties and early thirties. Also escaped an abusive marriage but then went on to have 3 fantastic kids with my current DH.
I'm now in my 40s and having a relapse. Thought it was time I lost the baby weight (I was actually fairly overweight, but it didn't bother me that much except I worried about my health and waist size).
Well I've lost that and more, and I can't seem to put any back on.
So no help, except you are not

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